VMware Aria Operations

What’s new in VMware Aria Operations – October 2022

The latest release for VMware Aria Operations (formerly vRealize Operations Cloud) is now available!  There have been quite a few leaps forward in many areas of VMware Aria Operations including sustainability, certificate monitoring, NSX-T support, VMware Cloud on AWS outposts, public clouds, overall UI experience, policy management, and VMware chargeback just to name a few.  We will cover each of these topics (and a few more) in this post. 

Sustainability

The first feature to mention is around sustainability.  The new VMware Green Score is a score that organizations can use to track where they are in their sustainability journey and how they are progressing over time.  We can ask ourselves how green is the data center and how can I optimize it further?  This score (the higher, the greener) measures power consumption, carbon footprint and environmental impact to determine how we can improve our overall sustainability goals.  The Calculation for the Green Score is as follows:

Workload Efficiency – Contributes to 22.5% weightage in Greenscore Calculation

EffIciency = Wastage /Wastage + Non Wastage

Resource Utilization – Contributes to 12.5% weightage in Greenscore Calculation

Virtualization – Contributes to 15% weightage in Greenscore Calculation

Power Soucre – Contributes to 37.5% weightage in Greenscore Calculation

To accomplish the Green Score, we have added 15 new metrics ranging from workload efficiency, CO2 emissions, power usage, and hardware efficiency.

Public Cloud

In an effort to increase Public Cloud coverage, there have been several new features and services that have been delivered.  The first of which is a FedRAMP update.  We can now connect to an AWS GovCloud account with the AWS integration for VMware Aria Operations.  After inputting the Access and Secret keys, we have the option to select AWS GovCloud in US East or GovCloud US (corresponding to US-West).

Also dealing with AWS, we have revamped some of the out-of-the-box dashboards.  The content has been refreshed for AWS network and storage overviews.  The new Network Overview dashboard has new and improved filters, VPC’s configured in the accounts, and NAT gateways and VPN’s connected to the VPC’s.  The Storage Overview dashboard comes with the same new filters, usage of EBS volumes and S3 buckets as well as the top consumers and S3 buckets with errors.

The Azure Network and Storage dashboards have also been refreshed along with the Azure Kubernetes Service Overview.  Each comes with the new filters, as with AWS, and contains VNets configured in subscriptions, the ability to drill down into individual VNets, storage account inventory, top consumers, and ability to drill down into individual storage accounts to see performance, capacity, availability and transactions as well as drilling down into blob, file, table, or queue storage.  The Azure Kubernetes Services Overview now contains Cluster Inventory for a broader view of your Kubernetes deployments.

For Google Cloud Platform (GCP), we have introduced monitoring for HTTP(S) load balancers.  VMware Aria Operations can automatically detect all types of HTTP(S) load balancers including Global External, Regional External, and Regional Internal.  The load balancer resource has been added to the GCP Inventory Dashboard.

The introduction of the GCP load balancer brings new metrics into VMware Aria Operations.  For Global external LB’s, we collect Backend Latency, Backend Request Bytes, Backend Request Count, Backend Response, Bytes, Frontend RTT, Request Bytes, Request Count, Response Bytes, and Total Latency.  For Regional External metrics include Backend Latencies, Request Bytes, Request Count, Response Bytes, and Total Latencies.  Regional Internal metrics added are Backend Latencies, Request Bytes, Request Count, Response Bytes, and Total Latencies.

Also in GCP news, the dashboards for Network, Storage Buckets, and GKE have been refreshed.  On the Network Dashboard, VPC’s configured can be viewed along with Subnets, VPN Gateways, and VPN tunnels connected to VPC’s.  Storage Bucket dashboards now contain the types of buckets used, top consumers and ability to drill down into individual buckets.  On the GKE side, clusters, node pools, pods, and resource usage have been added.

VMware Cloud on Dell

This release contains an update to VMware Cloud on Dell with costing support being added.  We now can view bill based costing and subscription bill details for the VMware Cloud on Dell adapter.  This allows us to look at VM level cost allocation using the actual bill.

VMware Cloud on AWS Outposts

Support for VMware Cloud on AWS Outposts is now available with the October release of VMware Aria Operations.  This support gives you on-premises infrastructure as a service and includes VMware SDDC pre-loaded on AWS Outposts bare metal.  This service is fully managed and supported by VMware.  Available in the US East and US West only, AWS Outposts can provide a consistent environment and ensures workload portability with access to familiar VMware tools, now including VMware Aria Operations.  Using the VMware Cloud on AWS integration that is already in VMware Aria Operations, we can add an organization ID and a CSP refresh token to configure multiple VMware Cloud on AWS Outpost SDDC’s with a single account including vCenter, vSAN, and NSX.  The inclusion of VMware Cloud on AWS Outposts into VMware Aria Operations brings specific object traversal specs and relationships along with custom summary pages for these objects.

Certificate Monitoring

The October release brings significant strides for certificate monitoring into VMware Aria Operations.  This update brings monitoring of cert expiration dates to non-native adapters, AD sources, outbound plugins and NSX-T certs along with vCenter and Native Adapters that were already available.  We have changed the way that these are viewed as well.  Previously we viewed expiration time as epoch time, however, a new metric has been added to show the number of days till expiration for ease of use.  We have also added a certificate monitoring dashboard to help with keeping track of all certs currently being used and their expiry days. 

Policies

In an effort to make policy assignment smoother and more intuitive, we have changed the way we can view the policy distribution for our environments.  We gain quick visibility into objects that are assigned to each policy in a single page and the ability to sort by assignments and affected objects.  We can also remove any assignments in-context without having to switch views or pages.  To re-assign objects or custom groups between one policy and another becomes as easy as a drag and drop.

Double clicking on a policy will give us a deeper view.

Management Packs

In an effort to keep VMware Aria Operations running as efficiently as possible with the best possible performance, several upgrades have made some management pack versions incompatible with the October release of VMware Aria Operations.  See the below chart for which management packs are affected.  The “Affected Version” will be that version or lower and the “Compatible Version” will be the version the management pack will need to be on in order to function with the newest release.  These compatible versions are on the in-product marketplace already so upgrading these is simple and only require going to the Repository in VMware Aria Operations and clicking “Upgrade” on the appropriate pack.  The Cloud team will be performing these upgrades automatically shortly after the October release if not done manually beforehand. 

Management PackAffected VersionCompatible Version
vRealize Operations Management Pack for Horizon2.1.1vRealize Operations Management Pack for Horizon 2.2
vRealize Operations Management Pack for vCloud Director8.6.1vRealize Operations Management Pack for VMware Cloud Director 8.10
SDDC Management Health8.6.2SDDC Health Monitoring Solution 8.10
vRealize True Visibility Management Pack for Red Hat JBoss EAP8.0.2vRealize True Visibility Management Pack for RedHat JBoss EAP 8.1.0
vRealize True Visibility Management Pack for Cisco Networking8.0.2vRealize True Visibility Management Pack for Cisco Networking 8.1.0
vRealize True Visibility Management Pack for SAP8.0.1vRealize True Visibility Management Pack for SAP 8.1.0
vRealize True Visibility Management Pack for ServiceNow8.1.1vRealize True Visibility Management Pack for ServiceNow 8.3.0

There are two third party vendors who are working diligently to have a newer version of their management packs compatible with this release, but have not completed them as of yet:

Management PackVendorAffected VersionCompatible Version
Hitachi Infrastructure Management PackHitachi2.8.0TBA
HPE Storage Management Pack for VMware vRealize OperationsHPE4.1TBA

The last feature to mention is the inclusion of the Management Pack for NSX Advanced Load Balancers.  This management pack was released as of August 23rd.  VMware Aria Operations Management Pack for NSX Advanced Load Balancer provides end-to-end visibility of the infrastructure and effective monitoring of the supported objects. While the NSX Advanced Load Balancer (NSX ALB) application uses next-generation architecture, delivering application services beyond load balancing, such as application analyticspredictive autoscalingmicro-segmentation, and self-service for app owners in both on-premises or cloud environments.  To learn more, there is a stand-along blog for this management pack or visit the documentation.

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